Jun 8, 2014; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Rockies relief pitcher Tommy Kahnle (54) looks on prior to the game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Tommy Kahnle: Possible National League Rookie of the Year Candiate

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The first half of the 2014 Major League Baseball season may have been a blur to most Colorado Rockies fans as they saw their beloved team fall 15 games below .500 entering the All-Star Break. One surprising player has been Tommy Kahnle who is receiving some love from CBS Sports writer Jon Heyman.

NL Rookie of the Year

1. Billy Hamilton, OF, Reds: He brings incredible excitement, and he has learned how to make that world-class speed work for him. Easy leader.

2. Chris Owings, SS, Diamondbacks: He’s out with a shoulder bruise but still put together a very nice first half on both sides of the ball.

3. Tommy Kahnle, RP, Rockies: The hard thrower has been a terrific Rule 5 pickup. Gregory Blanco, who started his career with an 11-game hitting streak, is favored to move into the top three with a full second half, but his callup came too late to be there now.

Heyman ranked Kahnle third on his NL Rookie of the Year voting, behind Billy Hamilton (Reds) and Chris Owings (D’Backs). Kahnle was an excellent Rule 5 pick-up from the New York Yankees and currently holds the second-best ERA (2.68) out of the pen for the Rockies behind veteran LaTroy Hawkins (2.45).

The 24-year-old flame-throwing right-hander out of Lynn University was drafted in the 5th-round, 175th overall by the New York Yankees in 2010. He has pitched effectively for the Rockies this season, appearing in 35 ball games. Over those 35 games, Kahnle has pitched 50 1/3 innings, giving up 32 hits, 17 runs, 15 earned, while only giving up the long-ball four times.

Kahnle currently holds a record of 2-1 this season, earning four holds while striking out 40 batters.

Although it seems unlikely Kahnle can top what Billy Hamilton is doing in Cincinnati, it’s awesome to see someone from the national media giving a Colorado Rockies player some well-deserved attention.

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Tags: Colorado Rockies NL Rookie Of The Year Tommy Kahnle

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